Getting sunflower seeds that will grow

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Old 10-15-19, 07:43 AM
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Getting sunflower seeds that will grow

We're here in NJ. Last year and this year we went to a 'sunflower farm' - agrotourism at its best!

Really nice seeing loads of sunflowers in bloom.

They let you cut stalks at $1 / stalks. So last year, we cut flowers that were in full bloom. We hung them upside in the garage to dry and we figured we'd be getting loads of seeds for these really pretty / big blooming sunflowers (we feed birds and use loads of black oil sunflower - they grow smaller heads (at least for us) and then the deer eat them : )

Didn't get to do anything with the seeds from last year. And started wondering -

1) We cut the flowers at full bloom. were the seeds mature / fertilized enough to be cut at that point?

The year we went back and found some sunflowers over by the rows of corn. These had been plaanted earlier in the season because they were dry / dead already.

We also got a couple ears of the corn - multicolor / 'indian' corn? Pretty. The corn stalks was already dead / dying / brown.

2) Would you think this year's sunflower seeds from the dead plants are more likely to grow?

I took a few kernels of corn and few sunflower seeds (from this year) and planted them in a pot in the window. the corn is sprouting nice!. it's been 1 1/2 weeks since we got the seeds. But the sunflower seeds aren't growing at all.

Any thoughts?

3) Do some seeds need a dormancy period after the plant dies before they bloom (to keep them from mistakenly blooming during a warm fall? Or need to be exposed to cold before being able to grow?

Thanks!!
 
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10-15-19, 10:54 AM
Pilot Dane
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1. No, full bloom is too early for taking seeds. You need to wait for the flower to finish blooming, turn brown and dry out.

2. Not all seeds germinate. If the seeds you too were still in last years flowers they might not be the best.

3. I replicate what Mother Nature does. Look at where your plants naturally grow.
If it's an area with freezing temps in winter then a dormancy and stratification might be needed.
 
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Old 10-15-19, 10:54 AM
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1. No, full bloom is too early for taking seeds. You need to wait for the flower to finish blooming, turn brown and dry out.

2. Not all seeds germinate. If the seeds you too were still in last years flowers they might not be the best.

3. I replicate what Mother Nature does. Look at where your plants naturally grow.
If it's an area with freezing temps in winter then a dormancy and stratification might be needed.
 
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Old 10-16-19, 05:50 AM
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thanks! I have to pad this to get it long enough to submit.... thanks again! !!!!
 
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